Effects of intravenous ethanol and of 4-methylpyrazole on alcohol drinking in alcohol-preferring rats

M. B. Waller, W. J. McBride, L. Lumeng, T. K. Li

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Abstract

Studies were undertaken to determine if elevated blood alcohol concentrations (BAC), produced by intravenous (IV) infusion of ethanol or by intraperitoneal (IP) administration of 4-methylpyrazole (4-MP), could reduce the free-choice oral alcohol consumption of adult male alcohol-preferring rats (P-rats). The IV infusion of ethanol either on a 24 or 12 (dark) hourly dose schedule reduced the amount of ethanol voluntarily ingested. There was a significant (p<0.05) inverse correlation between the amount of ethanol consumed orally and the amount of ethanol infused. Daily fluid and caloric intakes were not compromised. When the amount of ethanol infused was 85% or more of the control oral intake, there was a significant correlation between ethanol intake and tail-blood alcohol levels, taken at 5 min (r=0.98; p<0.05) and 55 min (r=0.93,p<0.05) after the last dark cycle infusion. Below the preinfusion level of 85%, the BAC were variable and did not correlate well with total ethanol intake. After a single IP injection of 4-MP, 90 mg/kg body wt, BAC increased from 10 mg% to 50-65 mg% for 2-3 days. Concomitant with the rise in BAC, these animals decreased their drinking of 10% ethanol and proportionately increased their water intake. The present studies suggest that pharmacological factors, distinct from orosensory cues, are important in regulating voluntary ethanol drinking behavior in the P-rats.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)763-768
Number of pages6
JournalPharmacology, Biochemistry and Behavior
Volume17
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1982

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Keywords

  • 4-Methylpyrazole administration
  • Alcohol-drinking behavior
  • Alcohol-preferring rats
  • Intravenous ethanol infusion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Behavioral Neuroscience
  • Pharmacology

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